I had read about Burger King’s Impossible Whopper that debuted in the United States a few years ago. Plant-based meat substitutes are starting to become more common here, and I did try the Alter-meat sandwich from Subway a little while ago.
Checking Burger King’s website here in Korea on Monday is a daily ritual for me because that is when they typically introduce new items. And on February 22nd when I checked they were advertising the Plant Whopper! I had been really interested in trying this ever since I had heard about it in the United States, and it had finally come to Korea!
The drive to the closest Burger King wasn’t too far, and so I took the trip to pick up a Plant Whopper to give it a try.
Now, in the past I have tried plant-based burgers before. Many years ago, I found them relatively tasteless, and the consistency was often crumbly and the texture was nothing at all like meat. So, to put it mildly, I was a little wary about trying the Plant Whopper, despite having heard some good things about the American version.
Ordering the Plant Whopper, I saw that the price was 5,900\, or about $5 US. This is actually pretty good for Burger King here, as many of the other Whoppers can be over 8,000\. Also, Costco Korea is selling plant-based hamburger patties that are significantly more expensive, so the price wasn’t bad for me.
Getting home, I took the Plant Whopper out of the bag, and took a look at the wrapper. As you can see, it is all green, with the ingredients prominently displayed.
The Plant Whopper has a nice heft to it, and definitely felt like it was worth the price. The one I purchased had barbecue sauce on it, but there is also a plain version available.
Opening up the top of the burger, the lettuce, tomato, pickles, and onion looked really good, and indeed they were fresh and crisp. The bun was also very fresh, and not at all stale.
However I’m sure that you’re not interested in the produce and baked goods, and so on to the veggie-patty.
The patty certainly looked like meat, and had the grill marks to prove it. It was slathered in mayonnaise and barbecue sauce, so I made sure to take a bite of the patty after cleaning the sauce off.
The veggie patty itself was pretty good. I was happy that it wasn’t too salty like the Alter-meat from Subway, but it tasted very charred. I’m not sure if this charred flavor is from the factory, or if the person at the location I went to over-cooked it. Regardless, it tasted a bit burnt. I didn’t notice a huge difference in flavor between this and a regular Whopper patty, but it definitely did not taste 100% like meat.
The texture of the patty was great. It was nice and firm, didn’t break at all, and stood up to all the chomping and chewing!
I would say the big problem for me with the Plant Whopper is the sauces. The Barbecue sauce was very sweet, and very abundant. The mayonnaise was also heavily slathered on, and seeing as how it is typically made with eggs, this is not a Vegan dish.
The final thing that I was a little disappointed with is that when I ordered the Plant Whopper I couldn’t get a slice of cheese on it. Normally I would understand it you wanted a 100% plant-based product, but as I just mentioned there was a LOT of mayonnaise on it!
Despite some of the drawbacks, I did enjoy the Plant Whopper, especially for it being the first day it was being served at most locations in Korea. I will definitely try it again, and hopefully they will allow for more variation when it comes to the toppings and condiments to allow for different combinations.